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Home Sharing

What Is Home Sharing?
 
Home Sharing is where a family in the community offers breaks to children & adults with an intellectual disability. The scheme is run jointly between Ability West and the Brothers of Charity Galway Ltd.
The scheme is currently run under three individual elements described as follows:

Home Sharing (short breaks) is a family based scheme which involves a family in the community taking a child or adult with an intellectual disability into their home for short breaks and caring for that person as a member of their family. Expenses are paid to the host family per session offered.  
 
Contract Family is where a family offers substantial time to persons with an intellectual disability who has extra requirements, by offering 10, 16 or 20 placements per month. With this option a retainer and expenses are paid to the host family.
 
Shared Living is where an adult with an intellectual disability shares your home on a permanent arrangement (with short breaks support to another family if necessary).  With this option a retainer and expenses are paid to the Shared Living host family.
 
Host Families is a two way process in that the families who provide the short breaks gain hugely from the experience of having a person with an intellectual disability stay in their home. Sustainable and unique relationships can develop that will last for many years to come. Host Families is an essential way to support and expand the informal networks of families and to build on the capacity and strength of communities. Host Family arrangements are seen as the way forward nationally and internationally as a viable and more appropriate type of service provision for people with intellectual disabilities
We have successfully placed hundreds of adults and children with families since 1985.
People availing of Host Family supports range in age from 4 to 70+ years of age. As well as having an intellectual disability some individuals have complex needs that include epilepsy, behaviour that challenges, physical disabilities and medical conditions. Each person’s needs are different and breaks can be altered to suit the individual and the family’s needs. The scheme receives very positive feedback from all those involved and there is a waiting list of families to be assessed and people who want to avail of short breaks. Home Sharing, Contract Families and Shared Living are resource dependent.

Home Sharing  is:
·         To provide short breaks to adults and children with an intellectual disability
·         To provide a “natural” living option to adults with an intellectual disability
·         To respond to the needs of natural families
·         To strengthen family relationships
·         To give individuals & families greater control and choice in the support service they receive
·         To provide a break for the carer whilst being a positive experience for the person with the disability
·         To give service providers the flexibility to deliver services in ways that respond to the needs of respite users and their carers and families
 
With Host Families the person seeking the service is carefully matched with a person/family that often have common interests and hobbies. The person with the disability is very much part of this process. The natural family often build up positive relationships with the Host Families.
 
The Aims and Objectives of Home Sharing are:
·         To provide short breaks to adults and children with an intellectual disability
·         To respond to the needs of natural families
·         To strengthen family relationships
·         To give individuals & families greater control and choice in the support service they receive
·         To provide a break for the carer whilst being a positive experience for the person with the disability
·         To give service providers the flexibility to deliver services in ways that respond to the needs of respite users and their carers and families